Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Lowe’s Companies (NYSE:LOW) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report sent to investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Lowe’s shares have outperformed the industry in the past three months, courtesy of the company’s healthy comps performance. Well, comps have been gaining from the company’s well-chalked brand and sales augmenting efforts both in stores and from an omni-channel perspective. Also, the company’s focus on enhancing services to Pro customers is encouraging and has been yielding. In fact, strength in Pro customers led to above average comps in building materials, lumber, millwork as well as tools and hardware during the first quarter of fiscal 2018. However, the company’s performance in the last reported quarter was hurt by unfavorable weather conditions. This in turn dented performance in the company’s outdoor categories. Further, the quarter witnessed higher SG&A expenses which dragged operating income. Persistence of such headwinds is a threat to Lowe’s performance in the forthcoming periods.”

Several other research firms have also commented on LOW. Wells Fargo & Co restated a buy rating and set a $100.00 price target on shares of Lowe’s Companies in a research report on Tuesday, May 22nd. KeyCorp restated an overweight rating and set a $115.00 price target (up previously from $105.00) on shares of Lowe’s Companies in a research report on Tuesday, July 24th. Credit Suisse Group set a $111.00 price target on shares of Lowe’s Companies and gave the company a buy rating in a research report on Monday, May 14th. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Lowe’s Companies from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report on Thursday, May 24th. Finally, Morgan Stanley set a $115.00 price target on shares of Lowe’s Companies and gave the company a buy rating in a research report on Thursday, May 24th. Nine investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty-four have given a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $103.00.

Shares of Lowe’s Companies stock traded up $0.48 during trading on Tuesday, hitting $98.16. 80,401 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 5,927,470. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.60, a current ratio of 1.02 and a quick ratio of 0.18. Lowe’s Companies has a 52-week low of $70.76 and a 52-week high of $108.98. The stock has a market cap of $80.24 billion, a PE ratio of 22.19, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.18 and a beta of 1.32.

Lowe’s Companies (NYSE:LOW) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, May 23rd. The home improvement retailer reported $1.19 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.22 by ($0.03). Lowe’s Companies had a return on equity of 66.36% and a net margin of 5.55%. The business had revenue of $17.36 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $17.44 billion. During the same period last year, the business earned $1.03 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.0% on a year-over-year basis. equities analysts expect that Lowe’s Companies will post 5.44 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, August 8th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, July 25th were given a $0.48 dividend. This is a positive change from Lowe’s Companies’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.41. The ex-dividend date was Tuesday, July 24th. This represents a $1.92 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.96%. Lowe’s Companies’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 43.74%.

In other news, SVP Matthew V. Hollifield sold 12,362 shares of Lowe’s Companies stock in a transaction dated Friday, June 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $99.56, for a total value of $1,230,760.72. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. 0.30% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Almanack Investment Partners LLC. acquired a new position in Lowe’s Companies during the second quarter worth about $103,000. CSat Investment Advisory L.P. acquired a new position in Lowe’s Companies during the second quarter worth about $108,000. NuWave Investment Management LLC acquired a new position in Lowe’s Companies during the second quarter worth about $126,000. FNY Investment Advisers LLC acquired a new position in Lowe’s Companies during the second quarter worth about $127,000. Finally, ClariVest Asset Management LLC acquired a new position in Lowe’s Companies during the first quarter worth about $118,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 75.48% of the company’s stock.

About Lowe’s Companies

Lowe's Companies, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a home improvement retailer in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. It offers a line of products for maintenance, repair, remodeling, and decorating. The company provides home improvement products in various categories, such as lumber and building materials, tools and hardware, appliances, fashion fixtures, rough plumbing and electrical, seasonal and outdoor living, lawn and garden, paint, millwork, flooring, and kitchens, as well as outdoor power equipment.

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